Sticky Spoons evolved from our desire to provide healthy food for our own young families. Our two-fold aim was to retain the wholesome goodness of local foods instead of mass-produced, processed foods, as well as to give our youngsters the experience of harvesting fruits and vegetables for the dinner table. We started out with what we could grow in our own backyards, and expanded to local orchards and farms. Jelly making simply became a natural extension of fruit-canning, and was a great way to share the bounty with friends and family. We (Kris and Debbie) have been "Sticky Buddies" for going on twenty years now, and fifteen of those have been as Sticky Spoons.
The Kansas Sampler Festival of October 1994 marked the first public appearance of Sticky Spoons. On the recommendation of a friend, we were invited to set up a booth to demonstrate jelly and applesauce making. We needed a name for our booth for the festival organizers, and since spoons are the major instrument in the jelly-making process, and considering how sticky everything got in short order, the name "stuck". The business was formed as an outgrowth of the Kansas Sampler and expanded to the local weekly Farmer's Market in Hutchinson, Kansas. We then expanded to the network of craft-shows and festivals. We load our van full of jellies, aprons, and bread mixes and traversed the state of Kansas, visiting approximately fifteen shows annually.
We started out making Apple Cinnamon, Grape, and Peach-flavored jellies, because those fruits were the ones we had canned for our families, but as requests were made for other flavors, we located other sources for fresh fruit outside our own gardens. Today, we have grown to include twenty different flavors, some of which are wild fruits indigenous to the prairie (such as Sandhill Plum and Elderberry) and others from other areas across the United States. For the fruits we are unable to obtain locally, we ensure that they are grown by other small operations, and are free of preservatives and heavy processing. We keep our jelly-making simple and don't add any artificial anything, we make them the "home-style" way, as jellies have been made for generations.
Our bread mixes are also homemade with Kansas-grown wheat, milled in Hudson, Kansas, by Stafford County Mills. Hudson Cream flour is prized by many bakers in our region for its tenderness. Again, no artificial preservatives or ingredients are added to our recipes, which our families have greatly enjoyed greatly for many years.